ePetition details

Speed Limit Reduction - Penshurst

We the undersigned petition the council to consider the case for reducing the speed limit in Penshurst from the current 30 mph to 20 mph. Penshurst is a village with a primary school and a thriving shop located close to its heart resulting in significant footfall around its centre. Most notably during morning commute times when children are going to school. Many local children walk to school and the roads entering the village (from all three directions) have areas of either no pavement or extremely narrow pavement. Other children are driven to school and parking is either the village shop car park (on opposite side of road to the school) or some distance away in the “lay-by" area leading out of the village towards Leigh. While there is some natural “traffic calming” effect in the very centre of the village (due to parked cars reducing speed to allow for passing), this often has the knock-on negative effect of causing drivers to “catch up lost time” once out of the slow area.

Following on from the above, it is worrying that one of the exact areas where drivers are prone to speed up (sensing they have been held up in the very centre of the village) is where the children are crossing the road for school from the village shop car park. There have been many “close shaves” brought to my knowledge in the past c.15 months since I took a role on the school PTA. Furthermore, many parents of children who walk to school have voiced their concerns due to numerous incidents of school bags being hit by passing cars - an unpleasant experience which gets ever more frequent as cars on our roads become larger. There have been at least two incidents in the past 6 months of cars crashed into the hedge going out of the village in the Fordcombe direction. Thankfully these accidents did not happen in daylight hours but it would have been utterly appalling if any pedestrian - child or adult - had been caught up in one of these as an innocent bystander. The “Crashmap” available on the KCC website shows that a total of six slight or serious incidents have taken place in the close vicinity of the village centre within the last 6 years (three on the B2188 which is the road in/out of the village from Fordcombe direction, one on the Penshurst Road out towards Leigh and two on Rogues Hill going towards Tonbridge). Thank goodness none of these resulted in a fatality but it seems a high number of incidents indeed for a small village to have suffered. It would be a devastation were the worst case scenario to play out, especially when there was scope for downgrading the chance of it happening by reducing the speed limit through the village.

We would note that a number of other local areas, with seemingly less need to do so, now have 20 mph limits in place. There is much speculation that the council will only reduce speed limits once the “worst case scenario” has occurred but we would trust this is not in fact the method utilised to make these kind of decisions.

This ePetition runs from 06/01/2023 to 06/04/2023.

96 people have signed this ePetition.